Student Support Services (SSS) and Cash Course
The University of North Carolina at Pembroke (UNCP) is an historically American Indian liberal arts college located in Robeson County in southeastern North Carolina. The town of Pembroke is home to the Lumbee Indian tribe, which is the largest tribe east of the Mississippi River.
About 57 percent of the student body at UNCP is minority and 16 percent is American Indian specifically.1 This number is incredibly high in comparison to other institutions where the percentage of American Indian students hovers around 1 percent or less.2
UNCP offers Student Support Services (SSS), a federally funded program, to support disadvantaged students, especially those who are low-income, disabled, or first-generation. American Indians often fall into the low-income and first-generation categories and, therefore, benefit greatly from this support network at UNCP.
With a goal of increasing retention and graduation rates, SSS provides tutoring, mentoring, career development, financial aid assistance and social counseling among many other services to help enrich and support the entire student.3
Support is provided by faculty, staff, and peers.
Through SSS, UNCP also offers a service called Cash Course4 which is an online program designed to help students take charge of their finances and provide them with the financial literacy required for success in college and beyond.5
An understanding of basic finances, such as saving and budgeting, is often taken for granted. Without these basic financial skills, students will never achieve financial independence. This service is an example of how UNCP enriches the whole student.
Michelle Goryn is a writer and public policy consultant in Raleigh, NC.
Paige C. Worsham is Senior Policy Counsel with the North Carolina Center for Public Policy Research and conducted the interviews and convenings for this project.
The N.C. Center for Public Policy Research is grateful to numerous, generous supporters. Major funding for this project is provided by the Lumina Foundation for Education, with additional funding from the James G. Hanes Memorial Fund, and the Hillsdale Fund.
- About the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, http://www.uncp.edu/about-uncp/quick-facts. ↩
- National Indian Education Association, http://www.niea.org/Research/Statistics.aspx#HigherEd. ↩
- Student Support Services at UNC Pembroke, http://www.uncp.edu/academics/opportunities-programs-resources/academic-resources/trio-programs/student-support-services. ↩
- Ibid. ↩
- Cash Course, http://www.cashcourse.org/. ↩